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Dec 24, 2012 3:00am PST
bear witness for the faith. >> bishop irenaeus, who wrote in the second century in what is now france, was about 18 to 20 years old when his little community was absolutely decimated by a devastating persecution. they say that 50 to 70 people in two small towns were tortured and executed. 50 to 70 people executed in public is a devastating destruction of that beleaguered community. and irenaeus was trying to unify those who were left. what frustrated him is that they didn't all believe the same thing. they didn't all gather under one kind of leadership. and he, like others, was deeply aware of the dangers of fragmentation. >> narrator: irenaeus thundered against those he saw as heretics, including the so- called gnostics. >> ( dramatized ): let those persons who blaspheme the creator, as do all the falsely so-called gnostics, be recognized as agents of satan by all who worship god. >> bishop irenaeus coined the term we call "orthodox." now, literally in greek, "orthodox" means "straight thinking." it's like "orthodontia" means "straight teeth." i mean, "orthodox" means "straight ideas
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